Merchant of Venice

The Merchant of Venice Act 4, Scene 1. Question Answer.

1) The Duke of Venice takes the role of Justice. Does he preside over the trial in a fair and impartial manner? Could Shylock argue that he has not had a fair trail? If so, why? (Full answer)

2)Shylock wants the law to be applied in full. Why is this a mistake in his part? (Full answer)

3)What is Shylock's least attractive moment in the scene? (Full answer)

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Last updated by Nureg
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I think the Duke tries to oversee the trial in a fair maker but Shakespeare asks us to look beneath the subtext. THe Duke is Christian and Shylock is a Jew. THere is an inherent bias against Shylock and his cause.

Applying the literal aspect of the law will only reinforce the stereotypes that the Christians have of Shylock. As well they won't let a Jew attack a Christian in this manner.

Probably wanting a physical pound of flesh isn't very attractive.

thank you!

No worries!

what do you mean by ''Shakespeare asks us to look beneath the subtext''?

Hi, subtext means the meaning behind or under the text. So, whatever the Duke says there is still systemic anti-Semitism (hatred of Jews) in Christian culture and law.

oh thanks!